In-Box Review
Douglas C-47
The Skytrain
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by: Richard Tonge [ TINBANGER ]

In the mid-1930's American Airlines ordered from the Douglas company an advanced version of the DC-2 passenger plane which was operated extensively by them on domestic air routes. In developing the new aircraft, the successful innovative ideas in the layout of the DC-2 were considered, but its construction embraced a variety of further changes, and as a result appeared the DC-3, a plane which defined an epoch in the history of aviation. Its design was so successful and well regarded, that it continued to be operated for passenger transport for many decades.

After the U.S. entry into World War II, it was clear that the army did not have enough transport aircraft. Considerable numbers of the civil DC-3 were requisitioned for army needs, and the Douglas company soon produced the modified C-47, dedicated to the requirements of the military, which differed in having a large cargo door on the side of the fuselage, and a reinforced floor to enable the carrying of heavy military cargo.

The C-47 soon became the most widely used transport aircraft of the nations allied against Hitler. Under Lend-Lease agreements the USA transferred to Great Britain and the USSR a large number of machines of this type, besides which, the USSR established their own production under license.

In the U.S. Air Force the C-47 was used in every theater, but the most famous pages of its military service told of the opening day of the Second Front in France, when a huge air armada crossed the Channel and dropped a great force of paratroopers from the air. In this role, the passenger plane in its new guise as the military C-47, proved to be the best all around aircraft for transportation tasks. It was rather capacious and comfortable for a military vehicle, along with impressive speed and range. No wonder that, after the end of World War II, these machines remained in the ranks of the air arms of the USA, Great Britain, the USSR and France for some time.
Many machines were sold before the war to customers in various countries around the world; and at the end of the war a large number of C-47's found new owners in countries on almost every continent - overall this aircraft was employed in 98 countries which is an absolute record for transport vehicles of the time. The C-47 along with the classic DC-3 is used even today in some countries of Africa and Asia.
History courtesy of Roden's website.

Kit contents
The kit arrived in a 10” X 6” end opening box one side has artwork of a C-47 escorted by two P-47 Thunderbolts and the other side has three views showing Vallejo colours and decal locations .
Three green sprues with 37 parts and one clear sprue with 6 parts.
I am very impressed with the very fine panel line engraving on all parts.
All sprues are free from flash.
No cockpit detail is included but due to the 1:144 scale none will be seen
Canopy windows are molded in one piece along with the cockpit roof.
7 cabin window panes are molded in two strips one strip will need to have one pane removed for the port side fuselage.
Also included in on the clear sprue are the landing lights and celestial dome.
Clarity of the clear parts is acceptable considering the scale.
Molded in two halves with the vertical stabilizer and rudder molded on.
Three 0.8mm holes will need to be drilled in the fuselage top for detail to be added later and one in the lower fuselage.
Stabilizes with elevators are molded separately.
Cargo door will be glued in closed due to lack of interior details.
The wings are molded in three parts,two upper and one lower piece.
Wing flaps and ailerons are molded along with the wings.
Engine cylinders have minimal detail and the cowls are well molded.
Four crisply molded parts make up the landing gear.
Two tires are made in one piece, it would have been nice to have had them weighted.
White metal aftermarket parts are available for the model,
Only decals for one aircraft are supplied.
Douglas C-47B Skytrain 53rd Wing, 101th Airborne Division, UK, July 1944.
D-Day strip’s will have to be painted or aftermarket decals sourced.
7 pages of black and white line drawings make up the instruction booklet with a small engine detail drawing 7a Scotch taped to one of the pages.
Construction is broken down into eight steps.
One page shows decal locations.

Many thanks to Stephen T. Lawson [Jackflash] for passing on this kit.

When contacting manufacturers and publishers please mention you saw this review at AEROSCALE
Highs: Flash free parts, very fine panel lines
Lows: Only one decal option
Verdict: This looks like an easy build.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:144
  Mfg. ID: 308
  Suggested Retail: $16.00
  Related Link: webstore
  PUBLISHED: Jul 23, 2013
  NATIONALITY: United States

Our Thanks to Roden!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

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About Richard Tonge (tinbanger)

I started building model aircraft with my brother and dad at about 7 years old(Yellow single engine float plane). Born in England so mostly built Airfix and Frog Kits! Moved over the pond in 1979. Main interest any type/era aircraft. Tinbanger call sign comes from my sheetmetal days. I am also ...

Copyright ©2021 text by Richard Tonge [ TINBANGER ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.


1/144 is too small for my taste (and old eyes) but it does remind me that i don't have a c-47 on the display shelve yet. aaaacchhh, so many models, so little time
JUL 25, 2013 - 08:49 PM
Actually this model is larger than a 1/72 WW II fighter, so the size isn't terribly miniscule.
JUL 26, 2013 - 11:24 AM

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